PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – As we begin a new year, it will still be the same stresses for nurses juggling a global pandemic.
“Some of the experiences I was having, symptoms of burnout — it’s an understatement to say it’s tough to work at the bedside,” said Anthony Berardi, who’s a nurse by trade.
The daily grind of caring for someone’s loved one is no easy task and a global pandemic just adds more weight to the shoulders of the nurses.
“More patients are passing away, the added stress of families not being able to see, Zoom calls with family far away,” Berardi said.
Nurses in the Pittsburgh area told KDKA burnout is a real issue and finding support is even harder.
“That PTSD element of carrying the weight of losing a patient home, not knowing how to have those conversations, you stuff it away and go into ‘home mode,'” said Amy Crippen.
Crippen and Nadia Moore worked in an ICU together experiencing that bedside burnout and wanted to create a space to support other nurses.
“The best thing about this group is it’s nurses and we have a mutual understanding of what we are going through,” Moore said.
It’s a Facebook group called Nurses Anonymous. Every other Tuesday, the group hosts a Zoom.
“We are looking for other voices to come on and share their experiences and really facilitate those conversations about self-care, really identifying what that is,” Crippen said.
It’s a growing initiative to provide an outlet for the people on the front lines.
“When you are going through it, you may not notice how it’s affecting you. It’s just your job and you have to make it to the shift and take care of this patient, it’s really important to take the time to process what you’ve been through,” Moore said.
The goal is to expand the group to include all healthcare workers, plus keep it going past the pandemic.